Nested Virtualization Support

Nested virtualization implies running a virtual machine inside of another virtual machine.

Note: This functionality is only available on Intel Macs, provided that the host virtual machine is configured to use the Parallels Hypervisor.

To toggle between the Apple's and Parallels's hypervisors, do the following:

  1. Open Parallels Desktop, right-click on the required virtual machine and choose Configure.

  2. Switch to the Hardware tab and choose CPU & Memory from the list on the left.

  3. Click Advanced, and use the Hypervisor drop-down menu to choose Parallels.

  4. Check the Enable nested virtualization box.

  5. Click OK.

Typical Use Scenarios

When enabled, this functionality allows you to run:

  • Hyper-V virtual machines inside Windows 8, Windows 10, and Windows Server 2012 virtual machines;

  • VMware ESXi virtual machines;

  • Xen and kernel-based virtual machines in versions of Linux that support Xen and KVM.

Note: Nested virtualization may dramatically reduce the performance of both host macOS and virtual machines.

If you use Parallels virtual machines to build, debug, and test applications, enable nested virtualization to install and work in:

  • Android emulator for Visual Studio;

  • iPhone emulator for Visual Studio;

  • Xamarin.Android;

  • Android Studio;

  • Embarcadero RAD Studio;

  • Docker for Windows;

  • Microsoft Visual Studio + TwinCat 3 (support for TwinCat 3 is being tested, and there may be some bugs).

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